Electric scooter trial extended to North Lambeth

Georgia Yexley of e-scooter company TIER Mobility, Hackney mayor Philip Glanville of London Councils, Helen Sharp of TfL and Duncan Robertson of e-scooter company Dott

Electric scooters will be available to rent legally in northern parts of Lambeth from today (5 July).

They will also be available in the City of London. Southwark will join the existing trial in five London boroughs as a “ride-through” borough.

The use of privately owned e-scooters on public roads is not covered by the trial and remains illegal in the UK, as does riding any e-scooter on footways.

The Metropolitan Police will continue to enforce legislation regarding the use of privately owned e-scooters.

A London trial of rental e-scooters has been running across five boroughs – Ealing, Hammersmith & Fulham, Kensington & Chelsea, Richmond, Tower Hamlets – and Canary Wharf since 7 June.

Rental e-scooters will be provided by three operators: DottLime and TIER Mobilty.

The number of e-scooters available to hire across London will increase from around 600 to 1,200 as the new areas join

It will continue to be possible to park e-scooters only in designated parking bays, enforced by GPS technology, Transport for London (TfL) said.

Following the government’s decision to legalise rental trials of e-scooters last month, TfL and London Councils  launched a trial of rental e-scooters in the capital.

TfL and London Councils are continuing discussions with boroughs about further expansions.

TfL said safety continues to be its top priority and that it and London Councils would continue to monitor the trial across the new areas.

Will Norman, London’s walking and cycling commissioner, said extending the trial to more areas “will enable us to get a better understanding of the role e-scooters can play in switching car journeys to greener and more sustainable alternatives”.

He said safety continued to be at the heart of the TfL trial, with London’s more stringent safety standards also in place in the new area.

Helen Sharp, TfL’s e-scooter trial lead, said: “We’ve worked closely with the City of London, Lambeth and Southwark to ensure this expansion of the trial works for everybody in the area.

“London’s safety-first trial of e-scooters is already providing vital data about the long-term role they could play in a greener and healthier future for the capital and this expansion will further help to shape UK and London policy in the area.”

Philip Glanville, mayor of Hackney and chair of London Councils’ transport and environment committee, said the trial was shaped by boroughs and aimed to support London’s diverse local communities by being inclusive of the travel needs of all Londoners, especially those on lower incomes.

”Rental e-scooters have a number of safety features  including  always-on lights, GPS-controlled parking and no-go zones – meaning they can only be parked in specified locations not obstructing the pavement and cannot be taken in certain areas, such as tunnels – and a unique identification number on every vehicle,” Glanville said.

The safety standards required in London go further than those set out at a national level, by requiring:

  • Users to be over 18
  • A lower maximum speed of 12.5 mph, compared to the 15.5 mph set nationally
  • Lights at the front and the rear of the vehicles that are always on
  • Larger wheels at least 12 inches in diameter, meaning they can navigate road surfaces more easily
  • Vehicles to come to safe stop in a “no go” area, and safely reduce speed to 8 mph in “go slow” areas

Operators also have additional safety mechanisms in place, including “first ride policies”, meaning riders must take an e-learning safety course before they hire for the first time, and lower maximum speeds in place for their first ride.

TfL, London Councils and the operators have also launched a campaign to promote the importance of safety during the trial.

TfL said it and London Councils and participating boroughs have engaged with people with accessibility needs throughout the development of the trial and will continue to do so during the trial, including with TfL’s independent disability advisory group.

“This includes proactively engaging with the blind and partially sighted community and encouraging each operator to work with the community to find an appropriate sound for e-scooters to alert people to their presence on the street,” TfL said.

It said that data shared by operators will  help to shape future government policy on e-scooters and will include anonymised trip details, safety and incident reporting and environment and sustainability metrics

TfL has installed a micro-mobility data sharing platform which will allow for two-way data sharing with the operators and help with the day-to-day management of the trial.